This Martha Stewart Turkey Meatball Recipe Uses One Unusual Ingredient

You can often count on Martha Stewart to throw an unusual recipe your way. While we've found in the past that despite her reputation for perfection, not all of her cooking advice is infallible, but we are keeping an open mind about her latest offering, which was recently promoted on Instagram. We took notice of the new recipe for turkey meatballs, because it contains an unusual ingredient, as far as meatballs go: apricot. 

Now stay with us here and let go of your perception of savory meatballs in a garlicky tomato sauce or a Swedish meatballs in a comforting brown gravy. Stewart's Turkey Meatballs in Apricot Sauce with Mint and Almonds is a sweet entree, thanks to the fruit, which (bonus!) makes them appealing to kids. However, there is also another layer of flavor to be found in these meatballs thanks to the complementary spices of cinnamon, ginger, turmeric, coriander, and a little garlic. This complexity will make them popular with the grownups, too.

These meatballs are simmered

The apricot sauce that saturates these meatballs sounds absolutely delicious. It is made by first steeping the dried fruit in chicken broth and cinnamon sticks before it is cooked on the stovetop along with the spices and puréed in a blender

In addition to the sweetness of the sauce, the soft, comforting texture of the meatballs also makes this recipe kid-friendly. According to Martha Stewart, the meatballs owe their texture to the fact that they are not seared, but gently simmered in the apricot sauce. Also, the step of chilling the meatballs in the refrigerator before adding them to the sauce allows the bread or matzo crumbs plenty of time to become moist, helping to ensure their fluffy texture. (As with all meatballs, the recipe cautions that overworking the meat when forming the balls can cause them to become tough.)

A final note: You'll notice that the recipe calls for Turkish apricots. Although the outlet doesn't explain the choice, Cook's Illustrated says there is a difference between Turkish (also called Mediterranean) apricots and the more common California variety. Turkish apricots are dried whole, and then pitted, whereas California apricots are halved before drying, resulting in a dryer fruit. Turkish apricots are therefore thicker, plumper, and, it stands to reason, lend themselves better to cooking and pureeing.

Does Martha Stewart have a winner in Turkey Meatballs in Apricot Sauce with Mint and Almonds? We'll find out.